Rambling Rose

Synopsis: Rose, is taken in by the Hillyer family to serve as a 1930s housemaid so that she can avoid falling into a life of prostitution. Rose's appearence and personality is such that all men fall for her, and Rose knows it. She can't help herself from getting into trouble with men. "Daddy" Hillier soon grows tired of Rose's rambling ways.
Genre: Drama
Director(s): Martha Coolidge
Production: Live Home Video
  Nominated for 2 Oscars. Another 5 wins & 13 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
112 min

In deep Dixieland, the month

of October is almost summery.

I had come to visit my father.

Mother had died a few years before

and Daddy was living alone.

He wouldn't have it otherwise.

Seeing the old house,

nostalgia for the south gripped me.

The old South I had known

and the people in it.

When I was 13,

a girl came to this house.

I overheard my father

decide with my mother

to hire this girl.

A good-natured, but unfortunate girl,

working for a farm family,

near Gadsden, Alabama.

Thus she was hired,

sight unseen, by a long-distance call.

She was the first person

I ever loved outside my own family.

But, as my father said,

she caused

one hell of a damnable commotion.


I'm Rose.

I've come to live with you.

Mother, the new girl's here.


What's your impression of her?

She's big.

She could beat up Daddy if she wanted.

But she's very girlish.

She wouldn't hurt anybody.

Your impression is very reassuring.

I sensed that she was so.

I'm glad to have it reconfirmed.

You mean confirmed, mother.

If it had been confirmed previously,

it would be reconfirmed.


You get Doll and Waski.

I'll telephone Daddy.

This is Waski. His real name

is Warren, but we call him Waski.

He dislikes it. I guess, one day

we'll have to stop calling him that.

You can stop it now.

You'll find him a very good boy.

As you can see, he's beautiful.


this little girl is Frances.

We call her Dolly.

It's short for Doll or Doll Baby.

Doll Baby, that's worse than Waski.

I want to be called Fran.

Daddy won't allow it.

That young man, you have met.

He is my oldest son

and my most brilliant child.

They say

I brag too much about my children.

I simply tell the truth.

Am I boring you, Rose?

No, ma'am. Not at all.


I realised the remarkable thing

about Brother when he was 6 weeks old.

He looked at me and recognised me.

He understood me.

Sounds crazy, but it's the truth.

I have to warn you about him.

He can be very dangerous.

He has an evil streak in him.

It is a streak

of pure, sheer meanness.

You'll scare the girl, going into

the 4th dimension like that.

Maybe to you it's the 4th dimension,

but to me, it's the truth.

Well, well,

so Miss Rosebud has arrived.

Yes, indeed.

Doll Baby, take this for me.


I swear to God, you are

as graceful as a capital letter "S".

You will adorn our house

and give a glow to its old walls.

Yes, indeed.

Now, it is my wife's belief,

which I accept, though do not grasp,

that to hire a person to do

household work is a criminal practice.

You are therefore here as a friend,

and indeed as a member of this family.

In love and harmony, dear Rosebud.

In love and harmony.

Do you understand?

Yes, sir.

I know you've had some troubles.

Those scoundrels in Birmingham

trying to lead you astray, and so on.

Life can be

very cruel to a young girl.

You've had a hard time.

But I hope and believe you've found

a safe haven in this house.

We welcome you to our home.

We welcome you from the heart.

We hope you're happy here.

Thank you, sir.

Hands in your pocket,

pockets in your pants,

watch the turtles

so the hootchie-kootchie dance.

Let's see if she goes in the water.

Waski, you gotta lick your lips.

You mean to those seeds,

they'll snap at you, Waski.


that hotel that Mr. Hillyer runs...

do y'all own it personally?

Yes, it's part of Mother's estate.

Her estate?

Her inheritance. It was left to her

when she was orphaned.

Buddy, your mama was a orphan?


Y'all help me shuck.

Hey, Buddy?

Where is Columbia University?

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Calder Willingham

Calder Baynard Willingham, Jr. (December 23, 1922 – February 19, 1995) was an American novelist and screenwriter. Before the age of thirty, after just three novels and a collection of short stories, The New Yorker was already describing Willingham as having “fathered modern black comedy,” his signature a dry, straight-faced humor, made funnier by its concealed comic intent. His work matured over six more novels, including Eternal Fire (1963), which Newsweek said “deserves a place among the dozen or so novels that must be mentioned if one is to speak of greatness in American fiction.” He had a significant career in cinema, too, with screenplay credits that include Paths of Glory (1957), The Graduate (1967) and Little Big Man (1970). more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Rambling Rose" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 22 Jan. 2021. <https://www.scripts.com/script/rambling_rose_16559>.

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